Consumer Defaults and Social Capital
Journal of Financial Stability,
Using account level data from a credit bureau, we study the role that social capital plays in consumer default decisions. We find that borrowers in communities with greater social capital are significantly less likely to default on loans, even after adjusting for different levels of income and other characteristics such as credit scores. The results are strongest for potentially strategic defaults on mortgages; a one standard deviation increase in social capital reduces such defaults by 12.4 %. These results can be generalized to any mortgage default. Our results also indicate that the effect of social capital is most prominent among more creditworthy borrowers, suggesting that when given a choice, the social cost of defaulting is an important factor affecting default decisions. We find a similar impact of social capital on consumer defaults in other datasets with more detailed information on borrowers as well. Our results are robust to modeling and methodology choices, as well as controlling for other drivers of default such as wealth, income and amenities from homeownership. Our results suggest that increasing social capital via measures to build community cohesion such as promotion of owner-occupied home ownership may be one avenue to deter consumer default.
Lender-specific Mortgage Supply Shocks and Macroeconomic Performance in the United States
IWH Discussion Papers,
This paper provides evidence for the propagation of idiosyncratic mortgage supply shocks to the macroeconomy. Based on micro-level data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act for the 1990-2016 period, our results suggest that lender-specific mortgage supply shocks affect aggregate mortgage, house price, and employment dynamics at the regional level. The larger the idiosyncratic shocks to newly issued mortgages, the stronger are mortgage, house price, and employment growth. While shocks at the level of shadow banks significantly affect mortgage and house price dynamics, too, they do not matter much for employment.
Real Estate Transaction Taxes and Credit Supply
Deutsche Bundesbank Discussion Paper,
We exploit staggered real estate transaction tax (RETT) hikes across German states to identify the eff ect of house price changes on mortgage credit supply. Based on approximately 33 million real estate online listings, we construct a quarterly hedonic house price index (HPI) between 2008:q1 and 2017:q4, which we instrument with state-speci c RETT changes to isolate the e ffect on mortgage credit supply by all local German banks. First, a RETT hike by one percentage point reduces HPI by 1.2%. This e ffect is driven by listings in rural regions. Second, a 1% contraction of HPI induced by an increase in the RETT leads to a 1.4% decline in mortgage lending. This transmission of fiscal policy to mortgage credit supply is eff ective across almost the entire bank capitalization distribution.
16.12.2020 • 26/2020
New wave of infections delays economic recovery in Germany
The lockdown is causing production in Germany to decline at the end of the year. When restrictions will be relaxed again, the recovery is likely to pick up pace only slowly, partly because the temporary reduction in value-added taxes is expiring. In spring, milder temperatures and an increasing portion of the population being vaccinated are likely to support the German economy to expand more strongly. The Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) forecasts that gross domestic product will increase by 4.4% in 2021, following a 5% decline in 2020. In East Germany, both the decline and the recovery will be significantly less pronounced.
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Exchange Rates and the Information Channel of Monetary Policy
IWH Discussion Papers,
We disentangle the effects of monetary policy announcements on real economic variables into an interest rate shock component and a central bank information shock component. We identify both components using changes in interest rate futures and in exchange rates around monetary policy announcements. While the volatility of interest rate surprises declines around the Great Recession, the volatility of exchange rate changes increases. Making use of this heteroskedasticity, we estimate that a contractionary interest rate shock appreciates the dollar, increases the excess bond premium, and leads to a decline in prices and output, while a positive information shock appreciates the dollar, decreases prices and the excess bond premium, and increases output.
13.06.2019 • 12/2019
Weak foreign demand – economic downturn in Germany
In the summer of 2019, uncertainty due to ongoing trade disputes weighs on the global economy. The export-oriented German economy is particularly affected. According to IWH summer economic forecast, gross domestic product is expected to increase by only 0.5% in 2019; the forecast for East Germany is 0.8%. The German labour market remains largely robust despite the economic downturn.
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Gute Absicht – böses Ende: Die US-Wohnungspolitik als Brandbeschleuniger der Weltfinanzkrise
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
Der Boom auf dem US-amerikanischen Eigenheimmarkt in den frühen 2000er Jahren führte zur schwersten Finanzkrise der vergangenen Jahrzehnte. Wissenschaftler haben unterschiedliche Faktoren dokumentiert, die zum rasanten Anstieg der Immobilienpreise beigetragen haben. Kaum beleuchtet wurde bisher die Rolle der US-Wohnungspolitik, insbesondere die Förderung des privaten Wohneigentums durch den Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). Der vorliegende Beitrag untersucht die Geschichte dieses Bundesgesetzes und seine Auswirkungen auf den Markt für Hypotheken und Wohneigentum seit den späten 1990er Jahren. Infolge des CRA wurden seit 1998 deutlich mehr Hypotheken aufgenommen. Der Anstieg der Immobilienpreise in der Boomphase beruhte zum Teil auf diesem politisch induzierten Anstieg der Hypothekenvergabe. Der CRA ermöglichte es auch Kreditnehmern mit geringerer Kreditwürdigkeit, eine Hypothek aufzunehmen – in der Folge kam es zu vermehrten Zahlungsausfällen. Der CRA hat also zum Boom-Bust-Zyklus auf dem amerikanischen Immobilienmarkt beigetragen. Er kann als Beispiel einer wohlmeinenden Politik gelten, die unbeabsichtigt wohlfahrtsmindernde Wirkungen zeitigt.